Phone: 239.540.7007
Real Estate
Home Closing 101
Do you know what to expect on closing day?
Most people don’t. And that can lead to some uneasiness. But help is here. The American Land Title Association, or ALTA, has created a website featuring information every homebuyer can use to help familiarize themselves with the closing process before walking into the closing
The Home Closing 101 Site
At Home Closing 101 you will find information you can use to prepare yourself for closing. The site covers topics such as title insurance, escrow fees and closing costs. So when the time comes to sign on the dotted line you’ll feel fully prepared.

Home Closing 101 is especially helpful for first time buyers. Buying a house is an exciting time and the more you know about the process, the more relaxed you’ll be going through it. Spend a little time on the site and you can walk through the home buying process, receiving explanations for each step and helpful hints on how to find the right people to help you on your journey to homeownership.

Click here to start learning about the home buying process.
What Is American Land Title Association (ALTA)?
Founded in 1907, ALTA is the national trade association and voice of the title insurance industry. ALTA members search, review and insure land titles to protect home buyers and mortgage lenders who invest in real estate.

ALTA members advocate safe and efficient transfer of real estate and insist on high standards when searching land title records and preparing insurance documents. The industry seeks to eliminate risk before insuring, which provides homebuyers with the best possible chance of avoiding land title problems. But, title difficulties can and do occur, and members offer both Owner’s and Lender’s title insurance policies as effective safeguards.

Click here to visit the ALTA website.
About Stewart Title Insurance
Stewart (NYSE: STC) is a leading provider of real estate services, including global residential and commercial title insurance, escrow and settlement services, lender services, underwriting, specialty insurance and other solutions that facilitate successful real estate transactions. Stewart offers personalized service, industry expertise and customized solutions for virtually any type of real estate transaction, through our direct operations, network of approved agencies and other companies within the Stewart family. Through a focus on integrity, smart growth and conservative management, Stewart remains committed to serving our customers, innovating and improving to meet their needs in an ever-changing market. 

Please click on the link below for more information:
Owning real estate is one of the most precious values of freedom in this country. You want the assurance that the property you are buying will be yours. Other than your mortgage holder, no one else should have any claims or restrictions against your home.

Title insurance is issued after a careful examination of the public records. But even the most thorough search cannot absolutely assure that no title faults are present, despite the knowledge and experience of professional title examiners. In addition to matters shown by public records, other title problems may exist that cannot be disclosed in a search. Title insurance eliminates any risks and losses caused by faults in title from an event that occurred before you owned the property.

Title insurance is different from other types of insurance in that it protects you, the insured, from a loss that may occur from matters or faults from the past. Other types of insurance such as auto, life, or health cover you against losses that may occur in the future. Title insurance does not protect against any future faults, but does protect you from risks or undiscovered interests. Another difference is that you pay a one-time premium for a policy that remains effective until the property is sold to a new owner - even if that doesn't occur for decades.
What is a Lender's Policy?

A lender's policy, also known as a loan policy or a mortgage policy, protects the lender against loss due to unknown title defects. It also protects the lender's interest from certain matters which may exist, but may not be known at the time of the sale.

This policy only protects the lender's interest. It does not protect the purchaser. That is why a real estate purchaser needs an owner's policy.
What is an owner's policy?

An owner's policy protects you, the purchaser, against a loss that may occur from a fault in the ownership or interest you have in the property. You should protect the equity in your new home with a title policy.

What does an owner's policy provide?

- Protection from financial loss due to demands that may be charged against the title to your home, up to the cost of the title policy.
- Payment of legal costs if the title insurer has to defend your title against a covered claim.
- Payment of successful claims against the title to your home covered by the policy, up to the cost of the policy.
Why the seller needs to provide title insurance?

Any purchaser will need evidence that his investment in your property is free of title defects. The title insurance policy that you provide the purchaser is a guarantee that you are selling a clear title to your real estate, unencumbered by any legal attachments that might limit or jeopardize ownership. It will reassure your purchaser that he or she is protected from any risks or losses and could help you close your deal.
Why the buyer needs title insurance?

Without title insurance, you may not be fully protected against errors in public records, hidden defects not disclosed by the public records, or mistakes in examination of the title. As a result, you may be held fully accountable for any prior liens, judgments or claims brought against your new property. If this should occur, your title policy insures that you will be defended at no cost against all covered claims up to the amount of the policy.
How much does title insurance cost?

The insurance commission approves and controls the premiums for title insurance policies. The premiums are paid only once and the cost depends upon the purchase price of the property and the policy amount must be equal to the purchase price.
What does title insurance protect from?
  • Fraud
  • Adverse possession
  • Rights of divorced parties
  • Deeds by minors
  • Undisclosed Heirs
  • Errors in tax records
  • False affidavits of death or heirshipProbate matters
  • Deeds and wills by persons of unsound mind
  • Conveyances by undisclosed divorced spouses
  • Forfeitures of real property due to criminal acts
  • Deeds by persons falsely representing their marital status
  • Documents executed by a revoked or expired Power of Attorney
  • Defective acknowledgements due to improper or expired notarization
  • Mistakes and omissions resulting in improper abstracting
  • Forged deeds, mortgages, wills, releases and other documents
  • False impersonation of the true land owner
It's not uncommon to get a rejected offer for a house. There are plenty of reasons why it can happen. It is very disappointing to lose a bid, but you can learn from it, so it doesn't happen again. Find out some of the possible reasons why your offer was rejected. Being rejected after making an offer on the house you love can be disheartening. You spent a lot of time looking for a house and deciding how much to offer for it, only to be told you're not going to get it. If you're wondering the reason why your offer was rejected, then this article Schutt Law has prepared for you may be of service to you.

Simple Reasons Why Home Offers Get Rejected in Fort Myers, FL

Your Offer Was Too Low

Would you like to be low balled when you're selling your home? Well, neither does the seller. If your offer is way lower than the asking price, the seller might feel insulted and offended. This house is their home, and they should receive what's fair for it. They might consider it unnecessary to even deign to respond to such a low offer. In fact, sellers in many states have the right to ignore less-than-list price offers. Think before you bid for a home, and evaluate your budget to be sure you can actually afford it.

A Better Offer Came Along

It's not that uncommon for a house to have multiple offers. If it happens that a competing offer is more attractive than yours, you can guess who will be getting the house. It's always better to aim to stay as close to the asking price as possible. All hope is not dead yet; there are some things you can try to sway the seller in your favor. Plus, even if your competitor placed a higher offer if they have plenty of demands the seller might opt out of selling them their home. When you convince the seller that their house should be yours, be sure to make it a safe investment by getting title insurance. For more information about title insurance in Fort Myers, and to get your insurance policy call Schutt Law at (239) 540-7007.

The Seller's Agent Also Represents Your Competition

It just may happen that another person placed an offer as well, and they're represented by the same agent as the seller. It would be more convenient for the seller to go for that buyer because they could come to a dual-rate commission agreement with the agent. Instead of having to pay the real estate agent full commission for selling their home, they would only need to pay half. The realtor is getting their commission from their other client as well. Tough luck for you.

You Have Too Many Contingencies

You are expected to have some contingencies when you place your offer; a home inspection, sale and title transfer,  and title insurance, for instance. However, if you come up to the seller with a huge list of demands, your offer will probably be rejected, even if it was a great one.  Sellers have expenses to consider as well, and if your offer raises those costs, it immediately becomes unappealing. Think hard about your list of demands, are they things you can fix on your own? On the other hand, you have the right to ask for some things, don't skip out on important requests, such as a home inspection.

There Was a Problem with the Real Estate Agent

Finding an ideal real estate agent is a crucial step in buying (or selling) a house. You need someone who is easy to work with but who also knows when to stand their ground. If your or the seller's agent is rude, acts superior and unprofessional, and is all around an unpleasant person, it will affect the sale.

The Timing Wasn't Right

Sometimes the timing is just not right. If your offer doesn't agree with the seller's time frame, you probably won't get the house. Maybe the seller needs to wait more than 90 days to get their new home, or maybe they still haven't found one. They can't just move out so you can move in. It's unfortunate, but there's not much you can do unless you're willing to wait for as long as they need. Have your realtor find out if both your time frames work before writing a purchase offer.

You Didn't Meet the Seller's Demands

Some home owners are unwilling to negotiate. Obviously, if things don't go their way, they will reject your offer. If the seller clearly stated that they expect a large earnest money deposit, they need specific financing terms and that you must have a pre-approval letter from your lender, you need to meet those demands if you hope to get the house.

Get Your Title Insurance Policy in Fort Myers, FL

Title insurance will be one of you lender's requirements before you get your loan. They need to be sure that their interest in your new home is safe and protected. You might be able to negotiate your title insurance policy into your list of contingencies, or you can choose to get it on your own by calling Schutt Law at (239) 540-7007. Remember to make to get the title insurance process started as soon as your offer gets accepted.